Benefits of language learning
According to an article I came across today, it is the process of learning a new language that encourages people to learn more languages, and becoming bilingual makes learning further languages easier.
The article talks about at study of native English speakers who were either monolingual, or bilingual in English and Spanish or English and Mandarin, and who were presented with words made up by the researchers. It found that the bilingual participants could learn the made up words much more easily than the monolingual ones, and the researchers think that the process of learning a foreign language improves your language learning skills.
Another study found that bilinguals are also better at learning words in their native language and generally have faster brain activity, especially older adults (60-68 years old) who have been bilingual from an early age. Apparently “these results suggest that lifelong bilingualism may exert its strongest benefits on the functioning of frontal brain regions in aging.”